Thursday, July 12, 2007

to weed ~ or not to weed

I had to go out of town for a few days. Any gardener knows that even a few days away from the garden in the middle of July can spell M-O-R-E weeding.

So, upon my homecoming, and the many weeds that were waiting, an article from slashdot caught my eye. It was about a Hortibot.

The article explained that a Hortibot could "manually pick weeds, spray, or remove them using flames or a laser". Hummmm. The Hortibot could be trouble. I have a hard time letting my husband weed, let alone a robot. After all, the definition of a weed is:

A plant considered undesirable, unattractive, or troublesome, especially one growing where it is not wanted, as in a garden.

How does the Hortibot distinguish between a weed and a desirable plant?

Which brings me to this:

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Purslane. I have lots and lots of purslane growing. Some would call it a weed. Some would call it food. And very good food, or food that is very good for you. Purslane contains ALA (alpha-linolenic acid) ...that is one of the Omega 3's! It is also very high in vitamin C. But, I have not ever eaten it ...yet.

There are recipes for Purslane. I was recently invited to be a part of a recipe exchange, (as my contacts have discovered!) I don't think a recipe for Purslane Gazpacho would have been a hit.

Today, I tried some Purslane. It wasn't too bad! Sort of salty and sour, like the little yellow clover I used to chew on when I was a child. Maybe I will be brave and make the Purslane Cucumber Salad. Heaven only knows, I will have tons of purslane in the weed basket tomorrow!


Pat K said...

Purslane has been known to take over my garden, when I too have not been diligent in the weeding department. I once spent several weeks trying to clear it out of my yard, only to find the local garden center selling it in pots. Maybe I missed a great money making opportunity. I don't know if any will be back this year, but if it is, I may have to check out those recipes.

Manise said...

We used to eat that as a salad in Greece where I grew up. Yes, it's loaded with good things for you! We used a simple vinaigrette with Greek olive oil and lemon juice, salt and pepper. The stuff that comes up in my garden if not picked early tends to be gotten by leaf miner, which doesn't make it very pretty. Mixed in a sald it's great too.

Judy said...

My grandmother use to make it. I will ask my mom how she did it.

meresy_g said...

Funny you should mention this. I have heard many mentions of people eating purslane. THis year, I've given it a respite in the garden and haven't yanked it, but I also haven't eaten it yet. I think the chickens might like it though. I will have to check out these recipes. And nibble some out in the garden. Interesting that it is salty.

Kristi aka Fiber Fool said...

It's a pretty plant. We have friends that landscaped solely with edible/usable plants. I like that idea given the amount of water it takes to keep a yard going here in CO.

We're to be away the last week in July. This is our first year with a garden. I actually don't want to go on vacation! *sigh* I'm not looking forward to handing over the watering and more than likely some harvesting to someone else!

Artis-Anne said...

Sounds like just the sort of plant I need to eat if its full of Omega 3 .
I know what you mean aboutweeds growing whilst you go away ; our garden was a real kungle when we came home after three weeks and I needed to cut may way up the path a
Thank you so much for your kind post on my blog I was so touched by your comments

elizabeth said...

I love those little yellow clovers! I still chew on them, when I find them. Definitely cook with the purslane, and report back how it was!

Fiberjoy said...

Did you fix any to eat yet? I like Manise's suggestion, sounds simple yet good. I'd be inclined to use grapeseed oil in the vinegarette.

finnsheep said...

I used to grow the German Golden Purslane (yellowish with much larger leaves), very tasty and pretty in in salads. It is not invasive like the "garden variety." But it also starts to get leaf miners so isn't very attractive after the first couple of weeks.

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